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OUR VIEW: Let’s throw a birthday party for South Dakota

South Dakota’s 125th birthday is this year, and state government officials are encouraging communities to plan celebratory events.

We hope Mitchell rises to that challenge.

A wagon train from the site of the old Territorial Capitol in Yankton to the current State Capitol in Pierre is planned in September, and Mitchell is one of the stops along the route. That could be a perfect opportunity to bring the community together in support of the wagon train and the 125th celebration.

The statehood anniversary is Nov. 2, which could be another great time for a community event, either in lieu of the September wagon train, or in addition to it.

Community events already are planned in Beresford, Brandon, Canton, Garretson, Madison, Pickstown, Pierre, Sioux Falls, Watertown and Yankton. Those communities have recognized the opportunity to bring people together around a common celebration of and pride in their South Dakota heritage, and we hope Mitchell does the same.

A statewide planning committee is maintaining a website at with more information and resources to help planners of events. We encourage everyone interested in state history, the 125th anniversary of statehood, and events in conjunction with the anniversary to visit the site and get involved.

We live in a beautiful state with a rich history and great people. We should throw a party every once in a while to celebrate our heritage and good fortune.